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tv   Asia Insight  PBS  December 17, 2014 6:30pm-7:01pm PST

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in november 2013, typhoon haiyan devastated the central philippines.
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the city of tacloban and nearby areas suffered the worst damage. but the mainstay industries of fishing and agriculture have resumed. however, unforeseen problems have arisen. thestally affected the island's environment. but local people are doing what they can to move on. it's been a year since typhoon
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haiyan. in this episode of asia insight, we see how the people of tacloban are trying to overcome their grief and working hard to rebuild their lives. the city of tacloban is located in the northeast of leyte island in the central philippines. tacloban developed into a port city in the mid 19th century. last year, typhoon haiyan left more than 2,700 of the city's population dead or missing. around 40,000 homes were completely destroyed. a year on and infrastructure has been reestablished in the city center. the town's economy has now
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resumed to 70% its previous size. local shopping arcades reopened this summer. stimulating the local economy. the upper market is known as the kitchen of taclobatacloban. it resumed business immediately after the typhoon, in december of 2013, but the produce on sale and foot traffic have yet to recover to pre typhoon levels. prices are back to how they use
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ed to be though, having risen dramatically after the typhoon.
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crops and produce made in and around tacloban have yet to reach the market. after a 30-minute drive from the city, rice paddies begin the fill the landscape. the harvest looks healthy with rice grains growing briskly.
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henry barbosa supports himself and his family with the one hector farm. he began harvesting several days and says this area is the last to be cultivated. henry is harvesting the last tenth of his rice.
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>> some rice can't be harvested. a closer look reveals that the husks are thin and empty. typhoon haiyan hit at -- meters per second. coastal areas were destroyed by huge waves. four kilometers in from the
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coast, the sea water inundated henry's rice paddies. the typhoon wrecked not only henry's rice paddies, but also his home and belongings. henry left his wife and four children at his wife's parent's home, hoping to have them join him later after rebuilding his life. he still has no idea when he can reunite with them.
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henry says he'll be able to send his children the money they need after he sells the rice he recently harvested. most of the dead or missing from typhoon haiyan lived along the coast. almost every home and building was swept away. to become mountains of debris. the district of anibong, tacloban city, is located on the coast and suffered unimaginable damage. now, rows of shacks line what's left of the streets. the makeshift homes are built
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from a combination of debris and cheap wood. the lady lives with her family of six in this 30 kilometer home built from anything they could
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salvage or collect. it may provide adequate protection of every day weather, but not from the terror of violent winds. following the typhoon, many locals took up shelter with relatives, but most returned to the area around six months later. since haiyan hit, the construction of buildings within 40 meters of the coast was made illegal, but this ban has been largely ignored.
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>> in order to build more permanent and temporary transitional houses. are getting as soon as possible, but i feel it will take three to four years. >> three to four years. >> yes, to build 14,500 houses. >> so far, only 1,500 temporary homes have been constructed. a month after typhoon haiyan hit taclob tacloban, asia insight reported on locals who turned broken refrigerators into boats. the coast was filled with tents provided by aid agencies.
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we met reggie villegas, who lost seven family members and his home in the typhoon. his only surviving sibling was his half brother, nico melo, 11 years his junior. reggie considered sending him to live with his father's family, but decided to take care of him by himself in the end. ♪
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now, the aid tents have gone, along with the refrigerator boats. locals have begun to build homes and resume fishing. ♪ we met reggie and nico at the village cemetery. of the seven family members reggie lost, only three were found. his mother, uncle and a brother. their remains are buried here. the bodies of his other brothers and nico's father have yet to be found.
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reggie also built a home out of debris and scraps. the changes in his life, however, haven't all been so bad. in august, he married his childhood friend, emalyn elona. she had been living in manila with her mother after her parents got divorced, but she
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returned to the village this year after her mother died. she has brought some sunshine and hope into the lives of reggie and nico. but now, reggie feels he has more responsibilities as the breadwinner.
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on this day, reggie returned earlier than usual from fishing. he's been casting his nets in places where he thinks fish will be swimming. but his catch is now far less than before the typhoon.
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the debris haiyan swept away has drastically affected the seabed. without sufficient homes, some fishermen have resorted to illegal trawling. reggie however, sticks to traditional methods and casts his nets in different locations every day in search of fish. but he's yet to find a good area to make a good catch.
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in the past, fishing near the coast was enough to sustain a living, but now, places where fish were swimming had changed due to tree roots scattered along the waters. finding fish has become a difficult task. and a few fish.
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the lives of local fishermen are no longer the same. these days, more and more are giving up on fishing all together and moving to manila in search of work. it's november 8th. 2014. the first anniversary of typhoon haiyan. preparations have been underway since early morning for memorial services in anibal.
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this is a place where bodies were temporarily kept. people began to gather before 8:00 a.m., the time when the typhoon struck. as the bell rings, the terror and tragedy of that day comes flooding back to the survivors.
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♪ memorial services are held at churches and other locations around town. ♪ typhoon haiyan killed more than 7,000 people. and caused a total of roughly $2 billion u.s. dollars in damage. ♪ more than 150 people are still missing from the city of tacloban alone. some have yet to find their loved ones. on this day, henry is selling his rice. it's the yield from his last tenth of a hectre of land.
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he was only able to sell seven sacks and make enough to pay his workers and debts. all he received was $50. about one-third of what he had hoped for. henry's kids had no chase but to keep waiting for their college fees.
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at 7:00 in the evening, reggie returns from his day's fishing. after dinner, he heads to a large church that he's been meaning to pray at, far from the village. it's the first time since typhoon haiyan struck that he's been here.
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as the people join together in prayer, the one-year anniversary of that fateful day comes to an end. the following morning, henry is -- he's sending his family the rice he kept. he's hoping it will make up for the money he wasn't able to send.
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no matter how difficult, henry plans to follow in his father's footsteps and continue growing rice. meanwhile, reggie gets ready to continue his search for good places to fish.
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a year after typhoon haiyan devastated the philippines, people are working hard to rebuild a new feature while cherishing the memories of the loved ones they lost.
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president obama is heading the most significant change in foreign policy in more than 50 years. he has announced his country will soon begin talks on normalizing diplomatic relations are cuba. >> we intend to create more opportunities for the american and cuban people and to get a new chapter in the nations of the americas. >> obama says his


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